Project Title: A cell atlas of Anopheles gambiae Malpighian tubules
Project Summary: I am producing a cell atlas of the renal system of the malaria transmitting mosquito Anopheles gambiae.
In 2021, 619,000 people died of malaria. Growing and widespread insecticide resistance of the disease vector, Anopheles mosquitoes, threatens malaria control. Gene expression differences often underlie resistance but are currently studied using whole insects, leaving cell-type specific gene expression patterns unknown. Like kidneys, insect Malpighian tubules break down and remove toxins, likely including insecticides. Bringing recently developed single nucleus sequencing technology to LSTM, I am working to generate a publicly available gene expression atlas of the Anopheles gambiae Malpighian tubules at single cell resolution. This atlas will open new avenues to identify molecular markers for resistance surveillance and new mosquito control targets.